Written By : M Samy

The Best Rabbit Breeds for Beginners?

What Rabbit Breed is best for Beginners?

Every pet rabbit lover should start with one of these three breeds, Mini Rex, Holland Lops or Mini Lops. So , for your first rabbit as a pet, it is wise to choose the Mini Rex, life expectancy 7 year , it’s a small sized rabbit breed , average weight 4.5 lbs, low maintenance , calm character and known for its robustness and resistance to disease.

There are many things to consider if you want to know if a rabbit is the right pet for you. I have chosen for you two other rabbit breeds that would also be ideal for a first time owner , but they will need just a little more attention ; let’s go for it. 

1- Rex rabbits, Mini Rex, Dwarf Rex are the most suitable for a first time

What Rabbit Breed is best for Beginners?
Rex Rabbit

I recommend you the Rex Dwarf rabbits or Mini Rex rabbits (resulting from a cross between dwarf rabbits and Rex); if it is the first time that you’ll get a rabbit as a pet.

Similar to the Dutch Lop, Polish and Havana rabbits, they are known to be docile and very calm, very cuddly and tolerate kids as long as you teach them how to handle bunnies .

Like the Mini Rex, Dutch Lop, Mini Satin, Havana, Chinchilla, and Himalayan breeds, Rex rabbits are also excellent if you already have a cat or dog because of their calm temperament.

best rabbit breeds for first time owners
Mini Rex Rabbit

Also recommended for people who have allergies and asthma because of their short, soft and outward pointing coat, and most importantly, because they they don’t shed and don’t lose a lot of hair during the hot season,.

They are the most popular rabbits in the USA, they live on average up to 6 or 7 years, they do not require special care , a healthy diet, good hygiene and daily outings will prevent him from contracting diseases.

With a minimum of maintenance, they almost never contract common rabbit diseases, such as otitis because of their protruding ears and dental malocclusions especially if they often have hay and chew toys in their cage.

For the grooming, a small brushing just to please him, otherwise they do not even need it because their hair is short and they take care of their fur themselves.

I also recommend this rabbit breed “Rex” for the uninitiated in rabbit breeding, because they do not need much space, a small enclosure will be enough and a small space that you frame with the baby gates so that they play and stretch their legs.

Finally, I recommend Rex rabbits as the best rabbit breed for people who have never owned one because an enclosure that is suitable for one Rex, will surely be suitable for two, one male and one female, both preferably neutered if you don’t want them to breed and avoid all the head rankings that go with it….

2-For a beginner, Holland Lop Rabbits are my favorite

The Easiest rabbit breed to care for
Holland Lop Rabbits

If for your first rabbit, you are looking for a breed that is a bit more active but still manageable, who loves to play even if he is not easily caught, and you are willing to provide a little more space (at least a cage of 20*30 inches) and effort to take care of daily brushing)  I recommend the Holland Lop, this rabbit breed can live twice as long as the Rex, which makes it an ideal breed for older children and teenagers.

Like the Rexes, the Holland Lops (a cross between the French Lops then the English Lops on one side and the Netherland Dwarf Rabbits on the other); are small too, less than 4 lbs, easy to care for, they just need a little more brushing because of their medium size fur.

I recommend them for beginners because they usually do not have any hereditary diseases or a predisposition to a particular disease, but I recommend you for this breed to make sure they wear their teeth by providing them with things to chew on like high quality hay and chew toys.

The Best Rabbit Breed to start with
Holland Lop Rabbit

Their cage or hutch must also be cleaned a little more often, at least twice a week (very little compared to some breeds that require it every two days, like Andoras);  because of their drooping ears on one side, which they drag close to the floor of the cage .

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On the other side (to avoid infections and mites), because of their hair length, a little longer than those of the “Rex”, likely to retain more dirt, hay and pellet as well as urine and droppings especially on their hindquarters, which you can clean with a little wet cotton).

While brushing once a week will be sufficient except during the shedding season, you should brush your Holland Lop several times a day to prevent it from swallowing too much hair and risking hairballs and intestinal blockage.

I recommend this breed of rabbits for beginners, as my second choice, just because they require a little more maintenance, otherwise, Hollands Lops are really friendly, cheerful, playful rabbits who will return your love, which has made them the most popular rabbit breed in the USA and for first time owners .

To enjoy your Hollands Lops, it is preferable that you give them access to at least one room, why not the whole house and outings in the garden are highly recommended especially on sunny days, 

3- For the first time, Mini Lops are an excellent choice too

Best beginner rabbit breed
Miniature Lops

Mini Lops rabbits, also called “Little Hanging Ears / Little Darlings” are a good choice for a beginner of any age .

These cute bunnies love kids and cuddles , they can live both inside and outside your house or apartment.

Mini Lops weigh usually less than 6 pounds, (a cross between the German Lop and the Small Chinchilla),they are also good pets for seniors, they bring them joy of life and keep them busy during the day.

All bunnies can make great pets , but these rabbit breeds are the best choice for beginners because on the one hand, they are robust, just look at their body, they almost never get sick when they do not suffer from obesity due to poor nutrition, and on the other hand, they have no known hereditary diseases and generally live their 10 years of age on average just by having made a few rare visits to the Vet.

For this breed, I would personally advise you to give them good quality hay and chew toys as they are known for their incisors that grow a little faster than other breeds.

The Mini Lop Rabbits, all colors (agouti, broken, pointed white, self, shaded, ticked, and wide band), is a breed recommended for beginners because of its ease of maintenance, they require only one or two brushes per week despite their hair which is of average length.

You could give him a brush every day during the shedding period, and it is necessary to count two shedding periods per year.

Mini lops are rabbits that clean themselves well, but they are also very easy to train (Litterbox training), so they will always keep a dry and clean coat, and ears all clean even if they drag them to the floor of the cage.

Mini Lop rabbit famillypet

You can always wet some cotton and clean the few stains they will leave if they can’t do it by themselves.

If you choose a Mini Lop as your first rabbit, expect a dynamic and energetic one , who loves to be hugged and stroked, but especially to get out of his cage and run around on the sofa or from one room to another, they also love to go out on the lawn, especially when there is sunshine and you also give him his piece of carrot…

Mini Lops are a smart rabbits, they love challenges and training, games and puzzles with treats, so don’t hesitate to bring them different toys, this will satisfy their natural curiosity.

Are rabbits a good beginner pet?

Rabbits usually make good pets, they are calm, affectionate, quiet, clean and don’t usually smell, can easily recognize their owner and also be trained, can be pet and can live up to 15 years.

Pet rabbits are good beginner pets not only for all these attributes, but also because they will only expect you to provide what they need like good housing, feeding, brushing from time to time, cleaning their enclosure and playing with them during their daily playtimes.

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When you buy a rabbit for the first time, you must also learn what they like to eat, how to avoid their diseases and how to detect them and finally get to know your rabbit’s character , understand its behavior and its body language in order to properly handle them and have a wonderful time together.

Cons of Owning a Pet Rabbit

Before you make a decision and get a pet rabbit , you should know that rabbits also have some ” imperfections ” but easily manageable if you get to know your bunny.

Rabbits are fragile animals that’s why they can quickly scratch a baby who pulls their coat or a child who doesn’t know how to handle them.

Rabbits are primarily rodents and love to chew, they need to do this constantly to wear out their incisors, you will just provide them with good hay, branches and chew toys.

Some rabbits just don’t like to be held, but over time you can always convince your rabbit to let you carry it and pet it with some of their favorite treats.

Unlike some small pets , pet rabbits need space to roam and run and exercise.

Rabbits are hardy but can also get sick. Some rabbit care can be expensive, so be prepared to take good care of your bunny and purchase pet insurance to cover any unforeseen expenses and veterinary fees if your rabbit becomes seriously ill and requires surgery, for example.

Your rabbit will not only eat your plants, your roses and your garden, but if you don’t watch him, he will also have fun making holes in your lawn.

Unspayed and unneutered rabbit will naturally mark its territory by spraying urine all over the house and this urine will be saturated with pheromones, which means it will smell really strong.

Finally, rabbits with long hair shed a lot, especially during the spring and fall, so you’ll need to help them with regular brushing.

Let’s wrap this up

If you want my opinion then ; the best rabbit breeds for a beginner are the Rex Rabbits, especially the Mini Rex, the Holland Lop as second choice and finally the Mini Lops.

I have chosen these best three first rabbit breeds because they are easy to maintain, do not require any special knowledge or specific equipment to have them and above all they do not get sick easily if you learn to take good care of them and detect health problems as soon as they appear.

Otherwise, all rabbits are easy to care for when you learn a little more about these adorable animals and you might even have an Angora or a Flemish Giant, you’ll just spend a little more time with them.

The 58 most common rabbit breeds in the United States

Here are more than 50 rabbit breeds pictures with their names so you can pick the one you wanna get , you can download the pictures or pin them to Pinterest if you want that as well

rabbit breed chart with pictures
rabbit breed chart with pictures

Frequently Asked Questions

Listen to me rabbit lovers: before we get into this Q & A about ideal rabbit breeds for the first time, let me tell you one thing, which is the following:

A First time rabbit owner can choose any rabbit breed as long as he learns about this particular breed and is willing to give his time and money to take care of it.

So all the advice and answers to the questions that will follow are just to prepare you and help you make the right choice of rabbit breed and so that you know what to expect when adopting one .

What is the ideal age for a first rabbit?

You should never buy a rabbit before it is weaned, around two months, but for a beginner, I would advise an adult rabbit, already neutered, so you will see its true character without the behaviors caused by the mating periods that can soak you.

Rather choose a Doe or a Buck for a first rabbit?

The best combination for a first rabbit is a neutered couple of course if you don’t want a bunch of kits, but you can choose one like the other, they are not that different !

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What is the best breed for a first rabbit in a warm climate?

Your rabbits should always have water available and shade, but Flemish Giants, Frensh Lop and Satins are known to withstand the heat better, and if this is your first rabbit, avoid the Giant Flemish , it’s too much work for a novice.

Which first rabbit for children?

When it comes to taking care of bunnies , you should not rely entirely on your kids , because an adult is needed to monitor the rabbit’s health, detect diseases symptoms, the quality of the hay …etc.

But if you’re looking for the most child-friendly rabbit breed , an energetic and playful rabbit who loves company, cuddling and being handled by children, I would say that Mini Lops are the best in this case.

Sussex , Himalayan and Californian rabbits can also make good kid-friendly pet bunnies .

one or two rabbits for the first time?

Personally on Famillypet, I always recommend a companion for all pets, who would like to live alone !
So I would say that a neutered couple of bunnies is better than one , especially if you are away during the day. Rabbits are social animals that enhance the companionship of other pets, not to mention that taking care of one rabbit is no easier than taking care of two.

Which rabbit breeds are the easiest to care for?

Low-maintenance rabbit breeds are those with short hair , those who weigh less than 6 Lbs are the easiest to take care of, I would name Holland Lop, the Lionhead, and the English Lop.

Which rabbit breeds for outdoors?

Indoors or outdoors you must still ensure all the necessary conditions to raise rabbits. Rex Rabbits , Mini Rex , Mini Lops and New Zealand Red Rabbits are known to be good candidates for life outside the home , although in my opinion they all can if the conditions are right.

Which rabbit breed has a longer lifespan?

Rabbits have usually a good lifespan and can live on average between 5 and 15 years, twice as long as wild ones, Dwarf rabbits like Himalayan, Holland Lop and Jersey Wooly Rabbits have a good temperament and do not stress as easily as other breeds.

Therefore, they tend to avoid many stress related diseases and live longer than large breeds.

On the other hand, spayed and neutered rabbits live longer, as do free roam rabbits and those who have a balanced diet

What is the laziest rabbit breed?

English Lops and Dutch Rabbits are the two calmest rabbit breeds, they are not lazy but just a little more laid back compared to other breeds. Mini Rex, American rabbits, French Lops and Continental Giant rabbits are also docile and calm.

What is The best rabbit breed when you have a cat or a dog 

Checkered Giant, French Lop, and Giant Chinchilla are the most recommended rabbit breeds when you already have a cat at home.

But it is still possible to introduce any rabbit to a dog or cat. Most dogs that have undergone a minimum of obedience training will do well with a new rabbit.

But if you already have a cat, it is advisable to choose a rabbit that is the same size as the cat to discourage him from attacking your bunny , but you can introduce your rabbit to your cat gradually to avoid problems. With time and patience, they will eventually become friends and even sleep and play together.

What is the friendliest rabbit?

Holland Lop, Harlequin Rabbit, Rex Rabbit, Jersey Wooly and Lionhead rabbits are the sweetest and friendliest rabbits. This doesn’t mean that other rabbit breeds are mean or nasty, but they are just a bit energetic and have strong characters.

M Samy pet blogger and author at famillypet

About Author

Hey! Samy here , Welcome to my Blog I'm an animal lover, especially pets and Really concerned about their well being ; I've been around and caring for all my life and Now ; a full-time Pet blogger at your service . My motto here at Famillypet is: "Pets First" ... Read More

4 thoughts on “The Best Rabbit Breeds for Beginners?”

  1. I’m so glad I found this post! I’ve been thinking about getting a rabbit as a pet, but I didn’t know where to start. This article helped me understand the different breeds and their temperaments, which is crucial for a beginner like me. I think I’ll start with the Lionhead breed, they seem so friendly and docile. Thank you for sharing your expertise!

  2. I’m so glad I found this post! I’ve been interested in getting a rabbit as a pet for a while now, but I had no idea there were so many different breeds to choose from. I’m definitely considering getting a Dutch Rabbit, they look so cute and friendly. Do you have any advice on how to care for a rabbit as a beginner?

  3. Hi, thanks for your comment
    By the way, Dutch bunnies are beginner friendly. You’re gonna find all the knowledge you need on this my blog: famillypet.com/rabbits.

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